Posted by: fvbcdm | November 12, 2014

Feast of Saint Josaphat (12 October 2014)

Saint Paul compares his situation with that of a great courtroom where he, and all Christians, are on trial. In any courtroom, there are the judge, the prosecuting attorney whom we usually call the district attorney, and the defense lawyer, who in many countries is called the advocate.

Now, Saint Paul is aware that he faces three sets of enemies. The Jewish high command at that time was eager to get him out of the way because he was preaching Christ. The Roman Empire was beginning to persecute the young Church because it refused to adore the Roman gods and goddesses and emperors, and then he looked into his own conscience and found his sins to be accusing him as well.

Is he discouraged? On the contrary! He cries out, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” Yes, in this cosmic courtroom, God the Father is the ultimate judge. But he loves us so much that he sent his beloved son into the world to be our redeemer. Then Jesus is the prosecuting attorney, but he has given his life for our salvation, and now has gone to heaven to plead our cause before the father, so instead of being the prosecuting attorney, he is our defense attorney, our advocate.

So Saint Paul concludes that whatever the Jews and the Romans can do against him are insignificant. The words of Jesus come to mind: “Don’t fear those who can only kill the body; rather, fear those who can cause the loss of the soul.” So Saint Paul is not afraid of any form of bodily persecution, torture, imprisonment, death. Those are temporary in duration, and lead us to heaven. And our sins? Well, if we repent of them, Jesus is tremendously eager to forgive them. So with the judge on our side and the prosecuting attorney actually being a defense attorney, and with our sins forgiven, we have nothing to fear and everything to look forward to. He ends this passage by saying: nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Thank you for seeking God’s truth.  God bless you. Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note: This message was composed some years ago.

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